Office: 1247 HW
Ramesh Mallipeddi received his Ph.D. from Cornell University in 2008, specializing in Restoration and Eighteenth-Century English literature. His research interests include sentimentalism, transatlantic slavery, colonialism, and postcolonial literatures. His essays on eighteenth-century British literature have appeared or are forthcoming in various venues, including Eighteenth-Century Studies, The Eighteenth Century: Theory and Interpretation, and ELH. His book, Spectacular Suffering: Witnessing Slavery in the Eighteenth-Century British Atlantic (forthcoming from University of Virginia Press), attempts to map the precise conditions under which slave distress emerged as a topic of emotional concern and political intervention. Rather than viewing sentimentalism as a literary-historical category internal to British history, it approaches sympathy as a mode of historical epistemology, a form of counter-knowledge that emerged in response to profound socio-economic transformations set in motion by Atlantic modernity. It undertakes this redefinition of sentimental sympathy in the interests of embodied slave agency. As the book argues, in articulating their own experiences of loss, the subjection of their bodies to the regimes of the market and rigors of plantation discipline, the ostensible objects of sentimental compassion—African slaves—also seized on the discursive resources of melancholic sentiment.
Spectacular Suffering: Witnessing Slavery in the Eighteenth-Century British Atlantic (forthcoming from University of Virginia Press in 2015)
“Spectacle, Spectatorship, and Sympathy in Aphra Behn’s Oroonoko.” Eighteenth-Century Studies 45, no. 4 (2012): 475-96.
“‘A Fixed Melancholy’: Migration, Memory, and the Middle Passage.” Special issue on “The Dispossessed Eighteenth Century,” eds. Chi-ming Yang and Jordana Rosenberg, The Eighteenth Century: Theory and Interpretation. 55: 2-3 (2014).
“Filiation to Affiliation: Kinship and Sentiment in Equiano’s Interesting Narrative.” (forthcoming in ELH).